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Ann Arbor balloon artist joins global effort to bring joy during COVID-19 pandemic

Carolynn Hayman sits on her front porch with her balloon art following international livestream event.
Carolynn Hayman sits on her front porch with her balloon art following international livestream event. (Jen Geer Photography)

ANN ARBOR – You may know her as Conrad the Unicorn, but award-winning local balloon artist Carolynn Hayman creates so much more than her signature mythical creature.

On Thursday, the owner of Pop! Designs & Creations participated in an international effort called “One Million Bubbles of Joy” in which more than 200 balloon artists from around the world livestreamed the making of their colorful creations to brighten their followers’ day during the global COVID-19 outbreak.

For her part, Hayman created a bright rainbow balloon column with smiley faces on it for her 63,000 Facebook followers. Later, she displayed the balloon art on her front porch for neighbors to enjoy at a safe distance.

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“Even as I was just starting to add some colorful balloons to my column, I had people walking by and saying how pretty they were," said Hayman in a statement. “Once the column was on display with the smiley characters, it drew attention from everyone going by, and some people took photos and shared the location with their friends who might be out. It was really nice to see the reactions.”

“With all the fear and uncertainty going on in the world right now, I felt like we had to do something,” Steven Jones, project leader of Balloon Designers in Seattle, Washington, said in a statement. “Balloons make people happy in ways nothing else does, so if working balloon professionals cannot make people smile right now, who really can?”

Read: Ann Arbor balloon artist places first at international balloon convention

Watch: Balloons and unicorns take over Ann Arbor at Pop! Designs and Creations

About the Author:

Meredith has worked for WDIV since August 2017 and was voted one of Washtenaw County's best journalists in 2019 by eCurrent's readers. She covers the community of Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in International Broadcast Journalism from City University London, UK.